The Rules of Digital Etiquette

Reviewed Jul 5, 2017

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Summary

  • Always be respectful and polite.
  • Remember that tone of voice is not present with text.
  • Always think twice before you hit “send.”

In this digital age, we sometimes forget we are dealing with actual people. Behind every email, text, post, tweet, or avatar is a real person with real emotions. Since so much communication is now done digitally, it is important to practice rules of digital etiquette.

Play nice

Even though we do not see the person’s face, we should never lose sight of the person’s presence. This means we still need to be respectful and polite. Texting “hello,” typing “please,” and responding with a “thank you” is always appreciated. It is also good to remember that tone of voice is not present with text. We may mean something sarcastically, but it could get taken literally. Sometimes a smiley face emoji may be needed to help set the tone.

Some people use all capital letters when they text because it is easier. This is not a good idea, since using all caps makes it look like you are shouting. Remember your manners when playing online games as well. When battling other opponents, it is easy to get caught up in the moment. Remember to keep the competition, and your remarks, friendly.

Refrain from texting or checking your messages face-to-face with a person. Otherwise, people may feel they have to fight for your attention. This applies whether you are meeting with co-workers, friends, or family.
 
Email and text rules

Emails and texts differ in many ways. Texting is used as a way to get a quick message across instantly. It is understood that both people are probably in a hurry and typing on their phone. You still do not want to be misunderstood or come across as rude. Make sure your phone’s auto-correct feature does not turn the words “Hey Buddy” into “Hey Baby,” for instance.

Emails are typically more formal than texts and are often used for business purposes. Emails should contain a subject, greeting, message, as well as some type of closing. Politeness and proper grammar are generally expected. Emails often contain more information than a simple text message. They should not be overly complicated, however, or contain too many questions or directives. Put spacing between paragraphs to make them easier to read. Place important points or questions separately at the beginning or end of the email.

Unlike texts, you should not always expect a quick reply to an email. Marking the email as important may help, as long as you do not mark all your emails that way. When including an attachment, add it first so you don’t forget. When responding to an email, do not click “reply to all” unless everyone needs to see your response.

If you find yourself emailing or texting someone back and forth, it may be time to call that person.

Cell phone use

It is never safe to text and drive, but talking on your phone can also affect your driving. Your attention is divided. Besides being unsafe, it can also be rude to other drivers. They may not appreciate your last-second lane change, or your slow reaction time when the streetlight changes.

There are other times when cell phone use might be considered rude. Some examples are at the dinner table or a restaurant, in a store, in a public bathroom, or in a movie theater. Be mindful of the people around you when using your cell phone in a public setting.

Social media manners

Social media can be lighthearted and fun. It can also turn ugly quickly. Remember that what you post will be seen by many different people. That means it is subject to many different reactions. What you think is funny might easily offend someone else. Always think twice before you hit “send.” If you do post something you regret, edit or delete it.

Be aware of the lasting effect of the thoughts and pictures you post online. Your political views or provocative photos might be seen by a potential employer one day. A college you are interested in might lose interest in you after visiting your page. Do not treat social media as an online journal to brag on or to vent on. Some things should stay private.

Privacy

Review your privacy settings often. Sometimes they will change without you knowing it. They can usually be found under account “settings,” “options,” or “tools.”

Also remember that a private message or text does not always stay that way. The recipient can easily share it with anyone else. “Sexting”—sharing sexual photos or texts from your phone—is never a good idea. Once you send those images or text, you have no control of where they wind up.

Resource

“Americans’ Views on Mobile Etiquette,” Pew Research Center

By Kevin Rizzo
Source: Federal Trade Commission, www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0033b-interact-tact; American Psychological Association, www.apa.org/gradpsych/features/2007/email-etiquette.aspx and www.apa.org/gradpsych/2015/09/social-media.aspx
Reviewed by Andrei Osipov, MD, Peer Advisor, Beacon Health Options

Summary

  • Always be respectful and polite.
  • Remember that tone of voice is not present with text.
  • Always think twice before you hit “send.”

In this digital age, we sometimes forget we are dealing with actual people. Behind every email, text, post, tweet, or avatar is a real person with real emotions. Since so much communication is now done digitally, it is important to practice rules of digital etiquette.

Play nice

Even though we do not see the person’s face, we should never lose sight of the person’s presence. This means we still need to be respectful and polite. Texting “hello,” typing “please,” and responding with a “thank you” is always appreciated. It is also good to remember that tone of voice is not present with text. We may mean something sarcastically, but it could get taken literally. Sometimes a smiley face emoji may be needed to help set the tone.

Some people use all capital letters when they text because it is easier. This is not a good idea, since using all caps makes it look like you are shouting. Remember your manners when playing online games as well. When battling other opponents, it is easy to get caught up in the moment. Remember to keep the competition, and your remarks, friendly.

Refrain from texting or checking your messages face-to-face with a person. Otherwise, people may feel they have to fight for your attention. This applies whether you are meeting with co-workers, friends, or family.
 
Email and text rules

Emails and texts differ in many ways. Texting is used as a way to get a quick message across instantly. It is understood that both people are probably in a hurry and typing on their phone. You still do not want to be misunderstood or come across as rude. Make sure your phone’s auto-correct feature does not turn the words “Hey Buddy” into “Hey Baby,” for instance.

Emails are typically more formal than texts and are often used for business purposes. Emails should contain a subject, greeting, message, as well as some type of closing. Politeness and proper grammar are generally expected. Emails often contain more information than a simple text message. They should not be overly complicated, however, or contain too many questions or directives. Put spacing between paragraphs to make them easier to read. Place important points or questions separately at the beginning or end of the email.

Unlike texts, you should not always expect a quick reply to an email. Marking the email as important may help, as long as you do not mark all your emails that way. When including an attachment, add it first so you don’t forget. When responding to an email, do not click “reply to all” unless everyone needs to see your response.

If you find yourself emailing or texting someone back and forth, it may be time to call that person.

Cell phone use

It is never safe to text and drive, but talking on your phone can also affect your driving. Your attention is divided. Besides being unsafe, it can also be rude to other drivers. They may not appreciate your last-second lane change, or your slow reaction time when the streetlight changes.

There are other times when cell phone use might be considered rude. Some examples are at the dinner table or a restaurant, in a store, in a public bathroom, or in a movie theater. Be mindful of the people around you when using your cell phone in a public setting.

Social media manners

Social media can be lighthearted and fun. It can also turn ugly quickly. Remember that what you post will be seen by many different people. That means it is subject to many different reactions. What you think is funny might easily offend someone else. Always think twice before you hit “send.” If you do post something you regret, edit or delete it.

Be aware of the lasting effect of the thoughts and pictures you post online. Your political views or provocative photos might be seen by a potential employer one day. A college you are interested in might lose interest in you after visiting your page. Do not treat social media as an online journal to brag on or to vent on. Some things should stay private.

Privacy

Review your privacy settings often. Sometimes they will change without you knowing it. They can usually be found under account “settings,” “options,” or “tools.”

Also remember that a private message or text does not always stay that way. The recipient can easily share it with anyone else. “Sexting”—sharing sexual photos or texts from your phone—is never a good idea. Once you send those images or text, you have no control of where they wind up.

Resource

“Americans’ Views on Mobile Etiquette,” Pew Research Center

By Kevin Rizzo
Source: Federal Trade Commission, www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0033b-interact-tact; American Psychological Association, www.apa.org/gradpsych/features/2007/email-etiquette.aspx and www.apa.org/gradpsych/2015/09/social-media.aspx
Reviewed by Andrei Osipov, MD, Peer Advisor, Beacon Health Options

Summary

  • Always be respectful and polite.
  • Remember that tone of voice is not present with text.
  • Always think twice before you hit “send.”

In this digital age, we sometimes forget we are dealing with actual people. Behind every email, text, post, tweet, or avatar is a real person with real emotions. Since so much communication is now done digitally, it is important to practice rules of digital etiquette.

Play nice

Even though we do not see the person’s face, we should never lose sight of the person’s presence. This means we still need to be respectful and polite. Texting “hello,” typing “please,” and responding with a “thank you” is always appreciated. It is also good to remember that tone of voice is not present with text. We may mean something sarcastically, but it could get taken literally. Sometimes a smiley face emoji may be needed to help set the tone.

Some people use all capital letters when they text because it is easier. This is not a good idea, since using all caps makes it look like you are shouting. Remember your manners when playing online games as well. When battling other opponents, it is easy to get caught up in the moment. Remember to keep the competition, and your remarks, friendly.

Refrain from texting or checking your messages face-to-face with a person. Otherwise, people may feel they have to fight for your attention. This applies whether you are meeting with co-workers, friends, or family.
 
Email and text rules

Emails and texts differ in many ways. Texting is used as a way to get a quick message across instantly. It is understood that both people are probably in a hurry and typing on their phone. You still do not want to be misunderstood or come across as rude. Make sure your phone’s auto-correct feature does not turn the words “Hey Buddy” into “Hey Baby,” for instance.

Emails are typically more formal than texts and are often used for business purposes. Emails should contain a subject, greeting, message, as well as some type of closing. Politeness and proper grammar are generally expected. Emails often contain more information than a simple text message. They should not be overly complicated, however, or contain too many questions or directives. Put spacing between paragraphs to make them easier to read. Place important points or questions separately at the beginning or end of the email.

Unlike texts, you should not always expect a quick reply to an email. Marking the email as important may help, as long as you do not mark all your emails that way. When including an attachment, add it first so you don’t forget. When responding to an email, do not click “reply to all” unless everyone needs to see your response.

If you find yourself emailing or texting someone back and forth, it may be time to call that person.

Cell phone use

It is never safe to text and drive, but talking on your phone can also affect your driving. Your attention is divided. Besides being unsafe, it can also be rude to other drivers. They may not appreciate your last-second lane change, or your slow reaction time when the streetlight changes.

There are other times when cell phone use might be considered rude. Some examples are at the dinner table or a restaurant, in a store, in a public bathroom, or in a movie theater. Be mindful of the people around you when using your cell phone in a public setting.

Social media manners

Social media can be lighthearted and fun. It can also turn ugly quickly. Remember that what you post will be seen by many different people. That means it is subject to many different reactions. What you think is funny might easily offend someone else. Always think twice before you hit “send.” If you do post something you regret, edit or delete it.

Be aware of the lasting effect of the thoughts and pictures you post online. Your political views or provocative photos might be seen by a potential employer one day. A college you are interested in might lose interest in you after visiting your page. Do not treat social media as an online journal to brag on or to vent on. Some things should stay private.

Privacy

Review your privacy settings often. Sometimes they will change without you knowing it. They can usually be found under account “settings,” “options,” or “tools.”

Also remember that a private message or text does not always stay that way. The recipient can easily share it with anyone else. “Sexting”—sharing sexual photos or texts from your phone—is never a good idea. Once you send those images or text, you have no control of where they wind up.

Resource

“Americans’ Views on Mobile Etiquette,” Pew Research Center

By Kevin Rizzo
Source: Federal Trade Commission, www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0033b-interact-tact; American Psychological Association, www.apa.org/gradpsych/features/2007/email-etiquette.aspx and www.apa.org/gradpsych/2015/09/social-media.aspx
Reviewed by Andrei Osipov, MD, Peer Advisor, Beacon Health Options

The information provided on the Achieve Solutions site, including, but not limited to, articles, assessments, and other general information, is for informational purposes only and should not be treated as medical, health care, psychiatric, psychological, or behavioral health care advice. Nothing contained on the Achieve Solutions site is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment or as a substitute for consultation with a qualified health care professional. Please direct questions regarding the operation of the Achieve Solutions site to Web Feedback. If you have concerns about your health, please contact your health care provider.  ©2019 Beacon Health Options, Inc.

 

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